Progress and challenges in developing the medical workforce in Kenya and the emergence of professional colleges to provide specialty training

Join the Global Health and Care Systems Student Society’s latest discussion, hosted by Green Templeton College student Muriel Levy.

In this talk, Professor Fred Were will outline how medical student training has expanded in Kenya in the past decade as new universities have emerged and the challenges this has posed in maintaining quality and absorption / retention in the public sector. He will also explain how specialty training is evolving away from a university-based model as professional colleges are being established to serve the East Africa Region.

From the vantage point of a member of Kenya’s national regulatory body for doctors and dentists (equivalent to the UK’s GMC in principle) he will reflect on the challenges of professional regulation in a setting with weak systems of governance, a growing private sector, and a public sector that has experienced prolonged nationwide health worker strikes.

About the speaker

Fred Were is Professor of Perinatal & Neonatal Medicine at the University of Nairobi. He was Dean for the School of Medicine, University of Nairobi, from 2014-2018 doubling up as Acting Principal of the College of Health Sciences from 2017-2018. He has remained active in the Kenya Paediatric Association [KPA] where he served as National Chairman for 11 years and established, and now helps direct, the association’s Non-Governmental Organization named the Kenya Paediatric Research Consortium [KEPRECON]. He sits on several Kenyan national committees including The National Immunisation Technical Advisory Group, is Chair for National Polio Certification, and is a member of the government’s Medical Practitioners & Dentists’ Board and National Perinatal Audit Committee. Globally he is a member of the WHO Scientific Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on vaccines and immunisation and has advisory roles to major organizations including BMGF, PATH, UNICEF and the GAVI Alliance. His research interests are mainly in Neonatology, Health Systems, Infant Nutrition and Immunization Advocacy.